Diplomacy and International relations - GS questions based on daily current affairs

1)   Colombo Declaration is related to?
- Published on 13 Jan 17

a. Anti-drug trafficking
b. Economic interests
c. Infrastructure development
d. Marine security
Answer  Explanation 

ANSWER: Anti-drug trafficking

Explanation:

  • The High Level Meeting of Interior Ministers of Indian Ocean Region (IOR) to Counter Drug Trafficking was held in Colombo, Sri Lanka.
  • It had adopted Colombo declaration.
  • It was resolved to work towards making the region a “Drug Free Zone”.

  • Features of the declaration are -

  • Narcotic drug trafficking has links possibly to organized crime and funding of terrorism.
  • It stresses on need for stricter enforcement of maritime laws and cooperation by the coastal statesm
  • They must provide mutual legal assistance and share information in narcotic drug trafficking.
  • It calls for the expansion and development of communication through the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC’s) Indian Ocean Prosecutors Network.
  • It called on the littoral states of the IOR to meet on an annual basis within the framework of the Southern Route Partnership (SRP) of Indian Ocean Forum on Maritime Crime (IOFMC).
  • These states must assess and report on the drug trafficking threat in the IOR and develop a coordinated approach to counter such threats.


2)   India signed its first strategic partnership with
- Published on 13 Jan 17

a. Russia
b. France
c. USA
d. Germany
Answer  Explanation 

ANSWER: France

Explanation:

  • India signed its first strategic partnership with France.
  • After that India has signed such partnerships with many countries.
  • The main criterion for choosing strategic partners should be a complementarity of interests in vital areas like security, defence and investments, on a long-term basis.
  • Strategic partnerships are commonly associated with defense or security related issues, but a survey of formal strategic partnerships around the world reveal they can also be covering a wide range in bilateral relations, from defense to education, health and agriculture, and quite commonly, economic relations, including trade, investment and banking.
  • However, the ministry had no “official list” of its strategic partners nor had it “formalised any criterion” for which a country qualifies for the term.
  • Many times India has been criticized for signing such partnerships with countries not fulfilling even basic requirements of fulfilling basic commitments.
  • Also many argue that partnerships are placed at the same level for all countries. That means that strategic partnership with China is kept at same level as strategic partnership with Rwanda.
  • However, it is said that it is misconception about India’s strategic partnerships is that they all entail the same level of engagement.
  • In reality, there is a hierarchy that is well appreciated by the foreign policy community in India.
  • “Strategic partnership” for Indian allows a nation that has not entirely shed its non-aligned roots to experiment with comprehensive diplomatic engagement like never before.
  • If things go well, India may be likely to take things more seriously and ultimately begin using the much more concrete word - Alliance.


3)   Russian-Indian naval exercises are scheduled from 14-21 Dec. What is the name of these exercises?
- Published on 12 Dec 16

a. Indra Navy 2016
b. Indra 2016
c. Navy 2016
d. Navy Indra 2016
Answer  Explanation 

ANSWER: Indra Navy 2016

Explanation:
Russian Indian Indra Navy 2016 naval exercise will be held from 14 to 21 Dec in SE Indian coastal city, Vizag and the Bay of Bengal.

The exercise comprises two phases:

  • Harbour from 14-18 Dec in Vizag.
  • Sea phase will take place in the Bay of Bengal from 19-21 Dec.

Harbour phase includes table top exercises, planning conferences ashore, official visit exchanges and sports and cultural events.

Sea Phase will include various fleet operations.

Two countries have been conducting anti terror drills since 2003.

Since 2005, the name Indra was given to these drills.

Indra drills/navy exercises were also held in 2007, 2014 and 2015.

Know Russia

  • World’s largest nation.
  • Borders: EU, Asia and Pacific and Arctic oceans
  • Landscape: Tundra, forests, beaches, plains.
  • Famous for Bolshoi and Mariinsky ballet companies.
  • Capital: Moscow
  • Currency: Russian rouble
  • President: Vladimir Putin
  • Population: 143.5m (World Bank 2013 estimate)

  • 4)   China is set to launch a new cruise ship in SCS islands from where to which point?
    - Published on 12 Dec 16

    a. Sanya to Yongle
    b. Xisha to Yongle
    c. Sanya to Xisha
    d. None of the above
    Answer  Explanation  Related Ques

    ANSWER: Sanya to Yongle

    Explanation:
    China is all set to launch a new cruise ship in the disputed South China Sea's islands in Dec 2016 to promote tourism, media report indicated on 9th Dec.

    Nanhai Zhi Meng, the new cruise ship with a capacity of 893 people, will start its maiden voyage in late December.

    It will conduct the cruise from Sanya to the Yongle Islands which are administered by China's newly-built city in the South China Sea called Sansha in Hainan province.

    The cruise ship, owned by the Nanhai Cruises company, has finished a trial voyage

    The trip will take four days, mainly visiting the islands of Yinyu, Quanfu and Yagong in the Xisha (Paracel) Islands, the report said.

    The ship is scheduled to make the voyage 4-6 times each month.

    SCS Dispute

    • The Paracel Islands also claimed by Vietnam.
    • These are a cluster of islets, sandbanks and reefs southeast of Hainan Island.
    • They are famous for their unusual scenery and ecosystem.
    • Sansha city on Yongxing, one of the Xisha islands, was founded in July 2012 by China.
    • City envisages tourism as its economic engine and administers three island groups i.e. Xisha, Zhongsha and Nansha.
    • Along with these are surrounding SCS waters.
    • Philippines, Vietnam, Malaysia, Brunei and Taiwan are the other disputants in SCS region.


    5)   Which of the following is/are true regarding membership of UNCITRAL?

    1) UNCITRAL member States are elected by the UN General Assembly.
    2) One-third members retire every 2 years.

    - Published on 29 Nov 16

    a. Only 1
    b. Only 2
    c. Both 1 and 2
    d. Neither 1 nor 2
    Answer  Explanation  Related Ques

    ANSWER: Only 1

    Explanation:
    UNCITRAL's original membership comprised 29 states, and was expanded to 36 in 1973, and again to 60 in 2004.

    Member states of UNCITRAL are representing different legal traditions and levels of economic development, as well as different geographic regions.

    States includes 14 African states, 14 Asian states, 8 Eastern European states, 10 Latin American and Caribbean states, and 14 Western European states.

    The Commission member States are elected by the General Assembly.

    Membership is structured so as to be representative of the world's various geographic regions and its principal economic and legal systems.

    Members of the commission are elected for terms of six years, the terms of half the members expiring every three years.


    6)   Which of the following is/are true regarding UNCITRAL?

    1) UNCITRAL is related to laws for international tourism.
    2) India has been its member since its inception.

    - Published on 29 Nov 16

    a. Only 1
    b. Only 2
    c. Both 1 and 2
    d. Neither 1 nor 2
    Answer  Explanation  Related Ques

    ANSWER: Only 2

    Explanation:
    UNCITRAL was established in 1966 with a recognition that “international trade cooperation among States is an important factor in the promotion of friendly relations and, consequently, in the maintenance of peace and security”.

    India is only one of eight countries that has been a member of UNCITRAL from its inception, and has recently been re-elected for a term of six years.

    2016 marks 50 years of UNCITRAL.

    UNCITRAL has created practical legal and legislative guides and provided technical assistance for law reform, apart from maintaining an updated database of uniform commercial law and judicial decisions.


    7)   Where are annual sessions of UNCITRAL held?

    1) New York
    2) Vienna
    3) Geneva

    - Published on 29 Nov 16

    a. 1, 2
    b. 2
    c. 3
    d. All of the above
    Answer  Explanation  Related Ques

    ANSWER: 1, 2

    Explanation:
    The United Nations Commission on International Trade Law (UNCITRAL) was established by the United Nations General Assembly by its Resolution 2205 (XXI) of 17 December 1966 "to promote the progressive harmonization and unification of international trade law".

    UNCITRAL carries out its work at annual sessions held alternately in New York City and Vienna.


    8)   Which ideology did Castro follow and executed in Cuba?
    - Published on 28 Nov 16

    a. Leninist
    b. Marxist
    c. Marxist-Leninist
    d. Maoist
    Answer  Explanation 

    ANSWER: Marxist-Leninist

    Explanation:
    Adopting a Marxist-Leninist ideology, Castro converted Cuba into a pro-Soviet, one-party, socialist state under Communist Party rule, the first and only in the Western Hemisphere.

    Policies introducing central economic planning and expanding healthcare and education were accompanied by state control of the press and the suppression of internal dissent.

    Abroad, Castro supported anti-imperialist revolutionary groups, backing the establishment of Marxist governments in Chile, Nicaragua, and Grenada, and sending troops to aid allies in the Yom Kippur War, Ogaden War, and Angolan Civil War.

    These actions, coupled with Castro's leadership of the Non-Aligned Movement from 1979 to 1983 and Cuba's medical internationalism increased Cuba's profile on the world stage.


    9)   In which capacity has Fidel Castro governed Cuba for most number of years?
    - Published on 28 Nov 16

    a. President
    b. Prime Minister
    c. King
    d. Sovereign
    Answer  Explanation 

    ANSWER: President

    Explanation:
    Fidel Alejandro Castro Ruz was a Cuban politician and revolutionary who governed the Republic of Cuba for 47 years as Prime Minister from 1959 to 1976 and then as President from 1976 to 2006 (de jure until 2008).

    He also served as the First Secretary of the Communist Party of Cuba from 1961 until 2011.

    He died recently.

    Castro is a controversial and divisive world figure with critics as well as supporters.


    10)   Which of the following is/are true regarding International Institute for Democracy and Electoral Assistance?

    1) India is founding member of the organization.
    2) Japan has observer status.

    - Published on 09 Nov 16

    a. Only 1
    b. Only 2
    c. Both 1 and 2
    d. Neither 1 nor 2
    Answer  Explanation 

    ANSWER: Both 1 and 2

    Explanation:

    • International IDEA's 14 founding member states were Australia, Barbados, Belgium, Chile, Costa Rica, Denmark, Finland, India, the Netherlands, Norway, Portugal, South Africa, Spain, and Sweden.
    • Today, it has 29 members. Japan has observer status.
    • The Founding Conference of International IDEA took place on 27–28 February 1995.

    • The institute’s four initial fields of activity were defined as:
      (1) the creation of a databank and provision of information services;
      (2) research;
      (3) establishing and promotion of guidelines;
      (4) offering advisory and capacity-building services.


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